The annual prize recognizes organizations working to advance effective, equitable, and/or sustainable solutions to challenges in Minnesota and the Dakotas through an inclusive process that makes the most of community assets. Each winner receives a package that includes promotional support and materials, as well as an unrestricted grant equal to 25 percent of the organization's prior fiscal year budget, up to $500,000.
The eight winners of this year's prize include Hope Community (Minneapolis), which works with racially diverse, low- and moderate-income residents and is known for its groundbreaking model of continuous engagement; Minnesota Valley Action Council (Mankato, Minnesota), a regional leader in the fight against poverty that has developed a portfolio of self-sustaining social enterprises to meet the changing needs of its clients while creating a reliable revenue stream in a time of reduced government funding; GROW South Dakota (Sisseton), which offers an innovative program of financial and technical assistance in rural South Dakota communities; and the Impact Foundation (Fargo, North Dakota), which works to build capacity among nonprofit organizations in North Carolina.
"Innovation can be difficult to define in words, but the track record of these eight organizations paints a clear picture of the concept," said Bush Foundation president Jennifer Ford Reedy. "They all think outside the box, and are open, resourceful, and completely invested in finding solutions for the region."